NFL Week 12 Picks: Upcoming Odds and Predictions for Full Schedule

Steve Silverman@@profootballboyFeatured ColumnistNovember 19, 2018

Matthew Stafford has a difficult assignment Thanksgiving Day against the surging Chicago Bears.
Matthew Stafford has a difficult assignment Thanksgiving Day against the surging Chicago Bears.Paul Sancya/Associated Press

The first part of the NFL season has seen the Chicago Bears rise from the ashes.

After the tired regimes of Marc Trestman and John Fox had turned the Bears into cellar dwellars in the NFC North, rookie head coach Matt Nagy has breathed life into the Windy City's favorite sons.

The Bears are once again Monsters of the Midway, and they have risen to first place in the division with a 7-3 record. They have beaten the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings in back-to-back weeks, and they continue their jaunt through the division with a game in Detroit on Thanksgiving.

This is a traditional game for the Lions, but they are going to have to up their play considerably if they are to find a way past the Bears. The Chicago defense pounded Matthew Stafford in Week 9, and they befuddled Kirk Cousins and the Vikings Sunday night.

While Nagy has helped turn the fortunes on offense with Mitchell Trubisky at quarterback and Allen Robinson at the wide receiver position, it is Chicago's defense that is wreaking havoc on a weekly basis.

Former Raider linebacker Khalil Mack has found a way to put his imprint on the game nearly every week, and he gets plenty of support from rookie linebacker Roquan Smith, defensive lineman Akiem Hicks and safety Eddie Jackson.

The Lions did a much better job of protecting Stafford in their Week 11 win over the Carolina Panthers than they did against the Bears, and Stafford also did an excellent job of getting rid of the ball faster than he did against Chicago.

Chicago is a three-point favorite in the early start (12:30 p.m. ET), according to OddsShark, and while it seems like the Bears are the better team and should win, the NFL linemakers regularly set traps.

This game is sure to attract bettors who just saw the Bears get the best of Minnesota Sunday night, and they will likely back the Bears.

However, the Lions have beaten the Bears in their last five trips to Detroit, and this is a game where the home underdogs give their fans a holiday present. 

Look for the Lions to register the upset.


Week 12 NFL point spreads and predictions (all point spreads courtesy of OddsShark)

Chicago Bears (-3) at Detroit Lions; Detroit 21, Chicago 20

Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys (-5.5); Dallas 24, Washington 21

Atlanta Falcons at New Orleans Saints (-10); New Orleans 38, Atlanta 20

Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals (-3); Cincinnati 24, Cleveland 14

Seattle Seahawks at Carolina Panthers (-3); Carolina 29, Seattle 17

Jacksonville Jaguars (-5) at Buffalo Bills; Buffalo 10, Jacksonville 9

Oakland Raiders at Baltimore Ravens (-11); Baltimore 44, Oakland 17

San Francisco 49ers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3); San Francisco 28, Tampa Bay 27

New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles (-6.5); Philadelphia 27, New York 24

New England Patriots (-9) at New York Jets; New England 27, New York 16

Arizona Cardinals at Los Angeles Chargers (-11.5); Los Angeles 33, Arizona 13

Miami Dolphins at Indianapolis Colts (-8); Indianapolis 23, Miami 17

Pittsburgh Steelers (-5.5) at Denver Broncos; Pittsburgh 24, Denver 17

Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings (-4.5); Green Bay 21, Minnesota 20

Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans (-4.5); Houston 30, Tennessee 20


SportsCenter @SportsCenter

Drew Brees had a field day against the defending Super Bowl Champions 😳 https://t.co/gYQD4zFYfq

Atlanta Falcons at New Orleans Saints

The Saints are rolling, and they appear to be an unstoppable force as the season has reached the home stretch.

It may not have looked that way at the start of the season when the Saints dropped their opener at home to the lowly Tampa Bay Bucs and barely squeaked by the Cleveland Browns in Week 2. However, the Saints improved after that and have won nine straight games.

While the Saints are getting sensational play from a number of different areas, it is difficult to overstate the performance of quarterback Drew Brees. He completed 22 of 30 passes for 363 yards and four touchdowns in the Saints' explosive 48-7 victory over the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles. Brees has thrown 25 TD passes this season and just one interception.

In addition to Brees, the Saints are led by wideout Michael Thomas and running back Alvin Kamara. 

While the Saints are rolling, the Falcons continue to suffer hard-luck losses. They dropped a 22-19 decision to the Dallas Cowboys at home and fell to 4-6 with the loss. Four of the Falcons six losses have been by six points or less.

The Falcons have their own big-play specialists in quarterback Matt Ryan, wideout Julio Jones and running back Tevin Coleman, but these teams are going in opposite directions.

The Saints are 10-point favorites, and we see the home team winning and covering the point spread Thanksgiving night.


New England Patriots at New York Jets

The Pats have shown their vulnerability this year as they have dropped three of their first 10 games, but they still have a two-game lead in the AFC East, and it doesn't seem likely that the undermanned Jets will hand them a fourth defeat.

The Patriots had their bye in Week 11, and since they were beaten badly the Tennessee Titans the week before, Bill Belichick is almost certainly going to have his team ready to play.

The Jets have dropped four games in a row since beating the Denver Broncos and Indianapolis Colts in back-to-back weeks, and the team has not responded well to Todd Bowles' coaching. Three of those four losses have been by 14 points or more as the Jets just can't do enough on offense to stay close to most opponents.

That's bad news against a motivated New England team that should be far healthier than it has been at any time in the last month.

If the Pats can put a couple of touchdowns together early with Tom Brady (274.8 yards per game, 17 TD passes), wideout Josh Gordon (26 receptions for 477 yards and two TDs) and rookie running back Sony Michel (453 rushing yards, four TDs) doing the damage, it will likely be too much for rookie quarterback Sam Darnold or veteran Josh McCown to overcome.

Look for the Pats to win the game handily and cover the nine-point spread.